Holding
Graham Norton
Hodder and Stoughton

Detail. It’s vital. This book is full of detail. Also, descriptive writing. We are asked to picture a small village in Co Cork. The drawing is painted for us so we need no imagination. As the words travel from the page to my consciousness I can see this village. Like many others left behind by the Celtic Tiger it may not be a modern hub but it is a colorful idyllic place to live. With a dark past.

However detail is all important and when Norton writes about it he loses some of his kudos. He talks of shopping trips to Dublin, to shops like Switzers, Boyer’s and Brown Thomas. However while Switzer’s and Boyer’s are things of the past they could have been there for whenever this book was set. Brown Thomas and Switzer’s couldn’t as with the demise of the latter came the rise of the former. They are the same shop. A small point but if this detail is wrong what other descriptor is incorrect – a work of real fiction. Surely someone could have told the author this?

Anyway, all in all this is an entertaining crime novel set in a small village, complete with an overweight slightly incompetent policeman and a mix of all sorts of characters ably described by Norton

niallhope

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